Category: Ismael Obregon

14
Jan

The New York Times Refresh Is About More Than Aesthetics

NYT redesignThis week, one of the world’s most respected newspapers, The New York Times refreshed and re-launched their digital platform to mostly positive reviews. Fast Company characterized the visual refresh as somewhat exciting compared to the previous decade-old design. Others pointed to the back-end changes, re-styled pages and “sections” and navigation adjustments as necessary moves to moor the company in the rough waters of decreasing sales, increased competition and slackening advertising rates for digital newspapers.

We generally like the design and navigational changes. The look and feel of the refreshed home page is less like the “swarm” of ink of the old design and presents a clean, measured and even engaging experience. With the new navigation features, scrolling through an article no longer requires clicking and reloading into new pages, which made for a choppy reading experience. But beyond the aesthetic, and even the functionality improvements of the refresh, what we find most interesting about the new site is what the changes say about the status of The Times in our culture and the newspaper world.

“We are seeing a company retool and experiment in the laboratory of design, media and branding, and in the end, this is about larger strategic issues,” Kate Canada Obregon, Oishii’s Head of Research and Strategy explained. “The New York Times is actively pursuing its once coveted leadership role in our changing world, and is using the discipline of design to get there.”

Oishii’s President and Chief Creative Officer Ish Obregon agreed, pointing out how even small details like the new smooth integration of the comments alongside the articles, which he says creates a “rich and textured” feel to the reading experience, is all part of a bigger news delivery goal. “From a design perspective, this is a very small step toward a blog look, without losing the power and stature of the new,” Ish said. “And great design strengthens the delivery of news.”

The Times has arguably been one of the most important leaders in the distribution of news. As it wields such formidable power, it also creates and shapes expectations about reading, how we get our news and how we recognize what’s important.

The New York Times redesign is a way for it to once again be a leader in reimagining news, reading and information delivery. Its role has always been to report facts, tell stories and inform us about our world, but in this new digital era, it’s also subtly taken on another role – to deliver “all the news that’s fit to print” through a fresh, innovative and powerful design harnessed through the most creative use of technologies.

18
Oct

How Creativity Boosts the Bottom Line

A while back, a group of us were meeting to discuss a project and client expectations. The internal conversation pivoted to questions about finding a “blue ocean” space for the design and branding industry, which eventually turned to a debate on measurement, and how to quantify “creative” using the metrics of efficiency and “value.”

Someone chimed in, “Creativity can’t be constrained by bottom-line considerations. That ‘line’ pushes away imagination and limits vision.” Since then, this perspective has become part of the culture and fabric at Oishii. Ish was recently featured on postPerspective speaking on this very tension: http://bit.ly/15Fv23V

05
Sep

Yahoo!’s Logo Redesign: Yet Another Highly Overrated Option?

yahoo

This morning, Yahoo! unveiled its highly anticipated new logo, on the heels of “30 Days of Change,” a project in which it unveiled a new logo each day—displaying each one on its homepage and throughout its network in the U.S. Oishii Founder and Chief Creative Officer Ismael “Ish” Obregon says that creating and designing or updating a logo provides an opportunity to refresh a company perspective and demonstrate vision and vitality.

In the competitive tech landscape, boldly speaking through a logo is an effective way of speaking about the future of a company. So does the new Yahoo! logo measure up?

“You can measure the strength of a brand by its ambition and reach,” says Ish. “I always ask myself, ‘Am I designing with the company and its future top of mind?’  Does the Yahoo! logo change much beyond its sans serif font? Is it merely a default change? There’s thinking and innovation going on here…and this may be a step toward a coming design revolution at Yahoo! But companies, in general, need bold action like a logo departure to show their internal thinking and innovation. One of the best examples is when Apple changed its rainbow logo into a sleek and modern representation of its product design and vision.”

12
Jul

Part 2: Choosing the Right Crowdfunding Platform

We continue on our series on Crowdfunding with insights from Oishii and how to make sense of all the options.

• What are the options for funding your idea(s)? Some top ones include:

Kickstarter – focuses on creative projects and is probably one of the best known crowdfunding portals
Indiegogo — allows a broad range of projects
Fundable – caters to small business startups
FundAGeek – focuses on technology and science-related initiatives
Circleup.com – only available to accredited investors raising the amount that can be raised, and only focused on mid-stage product companies
Rockethub – international portal focused on artists, scientists, entrepreneurs, and social leaders
ThrdPlace – a hybrid crowdfunding / crowdsourcing site focused on community development project
Crowdcube – only focuses on equity-based crowdfunding
FundingGarage – car and motorsport-oriented projects

• Which platform is right for you? What do you need to consider?

Your project really should be aligned with the philosophy of the crowdfunding site. For example, creative projects should be on creative-oriented sites while tech projects should be geared towards tech-focused ones. This has to be balanced with how popular the site is and how many people are engaged with the portal. After all, you’re looking to them for the investment. Only reward-based crowdfunding is available in the US today; once regulations are promulgated around equity crowdfunding, you’ll have to choose if reward-based or equity-based incentives are more appropriate for your project.

crowdfunding-photo

11
Oct

Do You Know Your Story?

You have ideas, technology and investors… but do you know your story?

 

Oishii’s own consumer behavior specialist Sterling Hawkins was recently profiled by NewsWire on his work through Maverick Angels, an entity that takes an entrepreneurial approach to angel investing. Last year, the company invested in no fewer than 11 startup businesses, of which the largest group worked in software or the Internet.
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